Retro Soda Pop

Enjoy a Delicious Retro Soda Pop

Next time you're packing the picnic basket, or preparing for a summer-time barbeque, why not add some extra fun to the mix by throwing in a few bottles of nostalgic soda pop? While not all of the favorites that you may have grown up with can still be found, many are indeed available in specialty grocery stores or on-line. In addition, there are some excellent imitators that make a pretty good pass at the original sweet drinks.

If you are really adventurous, you can buy machines and flavorings to use in mixing up your own concoctions! How about a blueberry peach fizz? Add some vodka to that, and you could have a fun adult deck party one night.

Better grab an extra cold one for Jimmy!
Better grab an extra cold one for Jimmy!

Remember Some of These Old Time Favorites?

  • Bubble Up
  • Green River
  • Big Red
  • Kickapoo Joy Juice
  • Moxie
  • Crush
  • Nesbitt's Orange Soda
  • NuGrape Soda
  • Chucker
  • Delaware Punch
  • Fanta
  • Red Cow
  • OK Soda
  • Gray's Cream (Orange Cream or Cream Soda)
  • Filbert's (Pineapple, Peach, Lime, Watermelon, Fruit Punch)
  • Sunny Soda Pop
  • Vernor's Ginger Ale
  • Frostie Soda (Blue Cream, Vanilla Root Beer, Cherry Limeade, Orange, Concord Grape)
  • Polar Soda (Birch Beer, Root Beer, Raspberry Lime, Orange)
  • Nehi (Orange, Peach, Grape)
  • Hank's
  • Cheerwine Soda
  • Jolt Cola
  • Sioux City
  • Shasta (many flavors)
  • Slice
  • Mello Yellow
  • Tab

Available South of the Border Only!
Available South of the Border Only!

New Flavors with a Retro Flair

You'll love these carbonated beverages, bottled in glass bottles with authentic sweet flavorings and retro-looking labels. The only difference between these and their predecessors is that they were "born" in the 1990s or later.

  • Sopranos (Limoncello, Amaretto, Chianti - all non-alcoholic)
  • Stewarts (Cherry Cream, Ginger Beer, Grape, Key Lime, Root Beer, Wishniak Black Cherry, Cream Soda)
  • Henry Weinhard's Sodas (Orange Cream, Root Beer, Black Cherry, Vanilla Cream)
  • Jones Soda (Blue Bubble Gum, Root Beer, Green Apple, Berry Lemonade, Cream Soda, and other flavors, including seasonal limited editions - eggnog, candy corn, sugar plum ?!)
  • Pepsi Retro - yep, you heard that right. But its not available in the U.S. - Only in Mexico. The difference is that the drink is made with pure sugar cane, and not with corn syrup. Sounds too good to be true!

Orange Crush Commercial (1970s)

Make Your Own Soda Pop at Home

With the number of wonderful flavors on the market, it is easy to make your own delicious carbonated beverages. You've seen them at Starbucks... Vanilla, Hazelnut and Carmel syrup. Most people think of these flavors for coffee, but you can also buy a wide range of flavors to mix up for Italian Sodas, or even your own creative "pop" versions.

You'll need to get a machine that carbonates beverages, first. There are a number of makes and models on the market, some through Amazon.com (see below), in a range of prices from approximately $45-200. These gadgets carbonate tap or bottled water, to which you can add flavored syrups in any combination or intensity to get the taste you wish. You can also carbonate juices, and even wine (wine spritzers anyone?)

With the variety of syrups available, you can get pretty creative with your homemade drinks! Kids will enjoy making homemade cherry cola after school. I'm thinking about a delicious watermelon-lime soda, myself. Add your favorite spirits, and you can come up with all sorts of creative cocktails to impress your guests - or just enjoy with your significant other on the back porch.

Tab Cola (1982)

© 2008 Stephanie Hicks

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Comments 46 comments

stevemark122000 profile image

stevemark122000 8 years ago from Southern California

Good Job!


Bob Ewing profile image

Bob Ewing 8 years ago from New Brunswick

That awas fun, thanks. Vernor's Ginger Ale a personal favourite


2patricias profile image

2patricias 8 years ago from Sussex by the Sea

I was a child in the 50s and 60s in Nebraska. We had Nehi Soda - it was all lurid colours. Bright green was called Lime-Lemon (not lemon-lime) and almost stung your mouth! I cannot imagine that today's parents would let their children have a product that looked so synthetic. However, I am still healthy.


Whitney05 profile image

Whitney05 8 years ago from Georgia

Very cool! I like the make your own soda idea.


solarshingles profile image

solarshingles 8 years ago from london

where are good old times, now? Very nice memories!


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Thanks everyone - this was very fun to put together. I swear the old commercials (both for the pop and my retro candy hub) are hilarious. Showing my age, I totally remember the Shasta and Tab commercials.... :-) 2patricias, the Nehi soda sounds delciously awful! What kid wouldn't like that? Whitney, after writing this, I am off to get myself one of those soda making machines. My kids (and I) will have a blast!


Sally's Trove profile image

Sally's Trove 8 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

Part of my childhood was the corner drugstore with its soda fountain, where you could "design" your own pops. Cherry, vanilla, and coke syrups combined...my favorite! What a fun hub, steph!


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Hi Sally's Trove - I have similar memories from a place called "Farrell's" Anyone else remember that place? It was primarily an ice cream restaurant, but also served burgers and fries. They made homemade vanilla, cherry or chocolate coke. YUM!!


marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 8 years ago from USA

I love these utube video commercials...and your pics were awesome! I read on google: ..."Companies spend roughly $700 million on media advertising each year, and hundreds of millions more on other promotional activities,"

They knew how to capture our eye and tastebuds...(can't say much about our health tho..but in the 50's - 70's we didn't know anything but yum!)

Growing up, we used to make our own Root Beer -- fun to me but not so much for my parents..LOL Thanks for this informative hub, it took me back some years. eek where did the time go? Suddenly I'm craving a poodle skirt...=)


Sally's Trove profile image

Sally's Trove 8 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

No. Never. Not ever the poodle skirt! I wouldn't mind having a new pair of saddle shoes, though. :)


Minnie's Mom profile image

Minnie's Mom 8 years ago from Seattle, WA

I loved reading your hub but I can't get ROOT BEER FLOAT out of my head. I guess you know what I'll be having later today.


rmr profile image

rmr 8 years ago from Livonia, MI

Fun hub! I remember Farrell's fondly! The pig's trough was always fun! And the big bass drum! Mostly I remember the gift shop, with all the rock candy!! Thanks for stirring up that fond memory.


Angela Harris profile image

Angela Harris 8 years ago from Around the USA

Another fun hub, Steph! I so remember walking to the neighborhood store and reaching down into one of those coolers filled with ice to get an ice cold 'pop', as we call it. And pick out our penny candy, too! Does anyone else remember Barq's root beer?


Rob Jundt profile image

Rob Jundt 8 years ago from Midwest USA

Great hub. There was a company in St. Louis growing up called Vess. They made the gamut of flavors but their flagship was the Vess Orange. I'm not sure if they're around anymore but we drank that stuff by the keg it seemed. Fun article.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Oh my - so many great memories! I am laughing so hard at the idea of Marisue and Sally's Trove (or maybe not) in poodle skirts! :-) Just kidding. Minnie's Mom.... I had a huge craving last weekend for a root beer float. Really wanted to stop at A&W - but it was closed! rmr - I am with you 100% on the Farrell's memories. We used to go there a lot growing up, or so it seems. Angela, thanks! And I LOVE Barq's root beer. They have a good diet version too. Rob, I never drank Vess, but probably because I was raised on Shasta. There is a great photo of me circa 1970 with a can of grape Shasta pop, sitting on my uncle's lap... classic. If I had the photo and the know-how to get it up here on the Hub, I would add it!


Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia

Great memory hub. Gee glad you put that coca cola fridge in there. We have one here. except it is painted grey and has no lid nor the bottle opener or the holder.

It is terrific to use for barbies or christmas. makes a great esky we fill it with ice and water and bit of salt and it keeps everything cold for 3 days.

Thanks for sharing this with us.


RUTHIE17 8 years ago

Another great Hub, Stephanie!  I remember so many of those "pops" myself.

Rob-remembered the Vess!  Used to come in big quart (no one had heard of a liter yet) glass bottles.  Cola was good, so was the strawberry and the rootbeer.  And it was cheap, even back then!

Do you know of a brand called "Polly's Pop"?  It was bottled in Independence, MO.  Had a picture of a parrot on a swing for it's label.  Used to be able to go to the bottling plant and buy it by the case in whatever flavors you wanted.  Grape and orange were the best to me!  When you could take the bottle away from your lips and leave a half circle on your upper lip of grape pop, you knew a little bit of heaven as a kid!  Those were the days!


pgrundy 8 years ago

Wow! What an unusual and fun hub! I love Green River pop. I think it's the color more than anything-- I rarely buy pop for myself, but now I may have to relapse...Thanks Stephanie!


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Hi Eileen, love the retro coke fridges! Makes me want to get one for our garage! Ruthie, I tried to find information about regional varities of soda, but did not hear of "Polly's Pop". Love your description of the colored rings on your lips! True, true! pgrundy.... my favorites are Green River and Big Red (Big Red tastes like bubble gum). I really can't drink regular soda due to my diabetes, but when I buy this stuff for my kids (rarely), I definitely take a few swigs. YUM!


C.S.Alexis profile image

C.S.Alexis 8 years ago from NW Indiana

We had a soda pop machine in the house when I was growing up. This hub sure brought back a lot of memories. Sure wish I had that pop machine now. It would be nice to have for water. The pop was SOOooo cold. The machine came out of my Mom's beauty shop. They delivered 10 cases to our doorstep each week. I hardly drink the stuff now.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA

Thanks for this great hub and all the nostalgia it brings. I especially love the Tab commercial where the lady dumps the water cooler over her husband's head for looking at the girl in the bikini. I always thought that was a funny commerical. Thanks for sharing.


Eric M profile image

Eric M 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon

I remember the Nesbitts Orange commercials of the 70's...if they aren't evidence of sugar (cubes, that is...lightly powdered) in 70's pop (culture), I don't know what is! Thanks for the fun article!


Stacie Naczelnik profile image

Stacie Naczelnik 8 years ago from Seattle

I'm glad you included Jones soda...but they have some weird flavors.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

I know - like some of their seasonal stuff. Very strange (Turkey and Gravy?) Never tried it, have you?


Stacie Naczelnik profile image

Stacie Naczelnik 8 years ago from Seattle

The turkey and gravy? No thank you. I think they recently had a ham one too.


Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 8 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

We still have Orange Crush here in Canada :) I buy it occasionally.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Ham soda?! Wow. No thanks here too. Uninvited Writer, I love trying soda in other countries. That's nice that you can still enjoy Crush in Canada.


Peter M. Lopez profile image

Peter M. Lopez 8 years ago from Sweetwater, TX

I see a Dr. Pepper in your photo, is it a Dublin Dr. Pepper...the original sweetened with real cane sugar? If you haven't had one, you've got to try one. A true Texas original. Very original hub. Thumbs up.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Good eye, Peter! Yes, I forgot to specifically mention the Dr. Pepper. The one picture is sweeted with cane sugar instead of corn syrup. It makes a BIG difference! Thanks for the comments (good to see you!)


beachbum_gabby profile image

beachbum_gabby 8 years ago

I remember Fanta, one of my favorite soda. Bottles and cans can be a good collection too!


Swee 8 years ago

hey Soda Pop was my uncles favorite. I love Tab Cola

i wanna try to drink. Because my uncle have that one

only collection in her room. I could only see it

but it's empty already. So sad can't drink.

_____________________Sweetche

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Jen Dee profile image

Jen Dee 7 years ago

I would love to get some original Dr Pepper. Your post made me wish I some in the house right now! I have some old time Coca-Cola products that would go good with your old time Coke at www.jendeestores.com. If you haven't checked out the Coke store in Las Vegas, I highly recommend it. They have tons of flavors, many that are only sold in other countries. I keep hoping that they will get a Pepsi store.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 7 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Hi Jen Dee - what a great tip. There is nothing like pure cane soda pop to bring me back to my childhood. Thank you for the link. I cannot wait to try out the Coke store in Las Vegas. Take care, Steph


Laughing Mom profile image

Laughing Mom 7 years ago

Lots of fun!!  The retro stuff is cool.  And the commercials.......I remember all of them!

I bought a carbonating machine when we had a 50s Diner Party for my daughter last year.  The kids had so much fun making their own flavors!  Some of them, I have to say ended up kinda nasty.  We also have a soda vending machine, but it's not retro.   It's one of those Maytags and we have the Dallas Cowboys panels in it.  Still fun, though.  Everybody likes to push the button and wait for their drink to come out the bottom.  Our adult friends sometimes more than the kids!

Thumbs up on your hub!!


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 7 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Hi Laughing Mom - thanks! I still want to try one of those carbonating machines. I am terrible about drinking plain water. :)


Racheal Ambrose profile image

Racheal Ambrose 7 years ago from Indiana

Great hub! Very nice list of old pop.


rocky 6 years ago

Very cool! I like the make your own soda idea.


Donna 6 years ago

We still are able to buy Vess products here in the greater Kansas City area. Also...Crush and Fanta...mostly orange, strawberry and grape. But every once in awhile they sell the 20 oz bottles of pineapple, cola, pina colada, lemon lime..etc.

Pollys Pop was an original to Independence MO and I understand there was a spring on the property that provided water. It was very popular in the Kansas City area until they closed.


bat115 profile image

bat115 6 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

Cool Hub!

Does anyone else remember Mandarin Orange Slice?


eatlikenoone profile image

eatlikenoone 5 years ago from Saline, MI

I love Henry Weinhard's. They make a black cream that even my wife likes and she hates about everything cherry. Their root beer makes for the best floats.


mobile themes 5 years ago

nice and helpful idea...


Derek @ VintageSodas.com 5 years ago

Wow, I love the look of those Pepsi Retro bottles. Wish they would bring that design to the USA. I hope retro sodas like this continue to make a comeback.


Marlin 55 profile image

Marlin 55 5 years ago from USA

This brings back memories. I still buy coke in the bottle. It reminds me of being a kid.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 5 years ago from Bend, Oregon Author

Nothing like Coke in a bottle! It tastes so much better than out of a can or fountain. :)


Rod 5 years ago

They do have that `pepsi retro' here in the U.S. only it goes under a different name, it's called `Pepsi Throwback' and it's been out since the past 2 years. However, they still not use the glass bottles yet as pictured above, nonetheless, it uses the pure cane sugar as it used to, instead of the HFCS that is in the regular line of prodcuts.


Nicole 5 years ago

They do make the Pepsi in glass bottles still (or again). We have them in our candy/soda pop store here in Dallas. The pepsi is not listed on the website but we do have it in stock. We carry over 135 glass bottle favorites that include most of the list above if you are interested. http://www.candycarrollton.com

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